Kosovo’s health authorities are trying a new technology to get people to get a COVID-19 vaccine – in cooperation with the Muslim community at Friday prayers.
Imams across Kosovo called on worshipers to be vaccinated, while medical teams waited in the courtyards of mosques to be vaccinated.
Despite the recent decrease in the number of new daily cases, the Kosovar authorities fear a faster spread of the recently observed delta variant. They insist that a vaccine is the best way to contain the epidemic.
There has been a drop in interest in people wanting to get the vaccine, from 20,000 per day at the beginning of March to less than 2,000 per day this week. About 42% of the population of 1.8 million have been vaccinated.
“This is a very good initiative. “I thank the Islamic community, the government and the Ministry of Health for this very important initiative, which is badly needed,” said Rajdi Jitya, a retired man who received a jab after prayer.
In the main mosque in the capital, Pristina, a few hundred people were praying, and many of them went to receive the Pfizer vaccine.
This month, Kosovo saw a significant decrease in new daily cases. On Thursday, only 11 were reported, with no fatalities.
The authorities continue to impose some restrictive measures, such as an all-night curfew, and masks are mandatory both indoors and outdoors.
Imam Burhan Al Hashani of Sultan Mehmet 2 Mosque in Pristina was among those who called on the faithful to prick, and his message went well.
It is the first time that I have heard the imam calling for vaccination. Everyone should be vaccinated, regardless of gender and age. We should all have it,” said Egson Dhaka, the young man at the mosque.